TikTok in Turmoil: US House Approves Drastic Measures Against Popular App


Washington D.C: In a significant development, the US House of Representatives has passed a bill titled the “Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act,” which could have far-reaching implications for the social media platform TikTok and its Chinese parent company, ByteDance. Here’s an expanded and structured summary of the event:

Overview of the Bill:
The bill, which was approved with a vote of 352 in favor and 65 against, mandates that ByteDance must divest its US operations of TikTok or face a ban in the United States. This bipartisan decision reflects Washington’s concerns over the potential risks posed by the app’s Chinese ownership and its possible links to the Communist Party in Beijing.

Implications for TikTok:
TikTok, which has experienced a meteoric rise in global popularity, now faces a critical challenge. The legislation requires ByteDance to sell TikTok within 180 days or risk being removed from major app stores in the US, such as Apple’s App Store and Google Play. This move could be a significant blow to the app, which boasts 170 million users in the US alone.

Senate’s Stance:
The bill’s future in the Senate remains uncertain, with some senators expressing reservations about the drastic measures proposed against TikTok. The outcome in the Senate will be pivotal in determining the bill’s final status.

White House’s Position:
The White House has indicated that President Joe Biden is prepared to sign the bill into law should it reach his desk. The administration’s support underscores the gravity of the national security concerns associated with foreign-controlled applications.

TikTok’s Response:
The passage of the bill has caught TikTok by surprise, particularly after President Biden’s recent engagement with the platform. TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew is actively lobbying in Washington to garner support against the bill. Additionally, Michael Beckerman, TikTok’s vice president for public policy, has voiced concerns over the constitutional implications of the legislation, citing the absence of a public hearing and the speed at which the bill is being advanced.


Presidential Powers:
A notable aspect of the bill is the authority it grants the president to designate other applications as national security threats if they are under the control of a country deemed adversarial to the US.

The “Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act” represents a concerted effort by US lawmakers to address national security concerns related to foreign-owned applications. The outcome of this legislative process will have significant consequences for TikTok and could set a precedent for the treatment of similar applications in the future.